Velva Jean Learns to Drive (Paperback)
Plume Books, 9780452289451, 404pp.
Publication Date: July 1, 2009
August 2009 Indie Next List
— Beth Carpenter, The Country Bookshop, Southern Pines, NC
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Summer '10 Reading Group List
— Annie Philbrick, Bank Square Books, Mystic, CT
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A touching read, funny and wise, like a crazy blend of Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton, a less morose Flannery O Connor, and maybe a shot of Hank Williams . . . Niven makes some memorable moon-spun magic in her rich fiction debut. Publishers Weekly(starred review)
Like All the Bright Places, hailed as a charming love story about an] unlikely and endearing pair (New York Times Book Review), Jennifer Niven's debut novelis a big-hearted story about the struggle to find happiness.
Velva Jean's mother urged her to "live out there in the great wide world, and growing up in Appalachia in the years before World War II, Velva Jean dreams of becoming a big-time singer in Nashville. Then she falls in love with Harley Bright, a handsome juvenile delinquent turned revival preacher. As their tumultuous love story unfolds, Velva Jean must choose between keeping her hard-won home and pursuing her dream of singing in the Grand Ole Opry.
About the Author
Praise For Velva Jean Learns to Drive…
Praise for Velva Jean Learns to Drive:
“A touching read, funny and wise, like a crazy blend of Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton, a less morose Flannery O’Connor, and maybe a shot of Hank Williams . . . Niven makes some memorable moon-spun magic in her rich fiction debut.”
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“In this story Jennifer Niven creates a world long gone, a mountain past where people suffer failure, loss, and betrayal, as well as the strength and joy of connection and deep love. Velva Jean Learns to Drive takes us far into this soaring, emotional country, the place where our best music comes from.”
—Robert Morgan, bestselling author of The Road from Gap Creek and Gap Creek
“A fluid storyteller.”
—Wall Street Journal
“Velva Jean learns to . . . not only drive, but to soar. This beautifully written coming-of-age story captivated me, and I recommend it to anyone who has ever longed to ‘live out there.’”
—Ann B. Ross, author of the bestselling Miss Julia novels